As SPUR detailed in its 2012 report, Public Harvest, urban agriculture provides many benefits to city residents. One of the biggest obstacles to expanding the number of Californians who enjoy these benefits of urban agriculture is access to land. Assembly Bill 551 would enable a property owner to apply for a temporary property tax adjustment while the property is under a five-year contract with an agricultural enterprise. Because it is an opt-in measure for counties, Assembly Bill 551 offers a conservative approach to a widespread impediment to the emergence of viable urban agriculture projects across the State. We encourage state legislators to support this bill.
Below are SPUR's letters to the Assembly Agriculture Committee (April 10, 2013) and also to State Senator Jim Beall (June 24, 2013).